December First Friday Art Trail

Images courtesy of Kristen Swartz


An exhibition of work by the late Steve Teeters is on view at LHUCA’s Christine DeVitt Exhibition Hall and features floor and wall sculptures from the latter portion of his career. His work is eminently Texan, inasmuch as it has the sense of a unique mixture of Southern and Western attitudes, informed by the aesthetics of big country, the confluence of Native American, Mexican, and Anglo-Cowboy influences, independent and bound together by a strong oral tradition. Rustic, jagged forms of rusted metal house interiors of many media, from jars filled with preserved relics of life at the turn of the century to shrine-like shadowbox assemblages that depict some instance or narrative.


Steve Teeters at LHUCA

They are Texan very cinematically; his sculptures all seem to look back to the Old West, at least stylistically. He never shows living forms—only decaying ones (rusting metal, dead trees, brittle-looking wood, skeletons, and vessels for preserving dead things), but he gives them a still-vital power to tell stories in a quaintly creepy way. The works are obviously memory-laden; each one assembles many familiar forms and images, but they are warped in the way mythical objects from an element of oral tradition are warped—familiar enough to be the object in question, but having enough of some other property to be mythical. In the end, he is a story teller, and his stories concern a typically Texan mixture of the vaudevillian and macabre and the contemporary and commercial.

Steve Teeters at LHUCA

Alberto Careaga |||/extensions CASP 5&J


Alberto Careaga’s thesis exhibition at 5th and Ave. J gallery has the imposingly meta title “|||/extensions”. A show of equal parts drawing and sculpture, it is a consummately focused consideration of space and place and the familiar. By presenting planes and lines that coalesce into structural/architectural forms, partly through physical occupation of space and partly through illusion, he strikes a careful balance between what we recognize as a room-like or home-like space and what presents clearly as an exercise in geometry. His work may be understood in the context of the movement of modern Latin American minimalists like Jesus Soto or Waldemar Cordeiro whose work is largely addressed to a radical reduction of space, though it would be a mistake to conflate the two. Careaga’s work seems to address itself to space as something intimate as much as something conceptually universal. I think the main accomplishment of the exhibition is systematically to force a reckoning of space as a conceptual/universal entity and a familiar/intimate entity; that is, to eliminate a dualism that has long been imposed on space.


Alberto Careaga |||/extensions CASP 5&J

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